TEMPOROMANDIBULAR JOINT INVOLVEMENT IN RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS PATIENTS – CORRELATIONS WITH DISEASE ACTIVITY AND QUALITY OF LIFE

Iordache Cristina, Murariu Alice, Boariu Diana, Chirieac Rodica, Ancuța Codrina

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study was to assess symptoms and signs of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) involvement in patients with rheumatoid arthritis and to offer a complex outlook of the TMJ evaluation in routine practice in rheumatic patients. We performed a prospective observational study in consecutive patients with different inflammatory and degenerative rheumatic conditions and secondary TMJ involvement, aiming to realise a complex (epidemiological, clinical, biological and imaging) description of TMJ pathology. The results of the present study showed that TMJ involvement was usually reported in different RA subtypes. The presence of TMJ issues was significantly associated with several individual RA parameters defining disease activity such as tender and swollen joints and also with disability and impaired life quality as suggested by high HAQ scores. TMJ pathology remains a major cause of altered quality of life in patients with chronic inflammatory rheumatic conditions such as RA.

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